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Miracle on 34th Street (1947)

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Miracle on 34th Street (1947)


Maureen O'Hara
John Payne
Natalie Wood
Edmund Gwenn

Directed by George Seaton

The movie starts with a note that this may just be one of those feel good movies with no special twist, but then as it carries on you come to conclude that it is, but what you will not expect is the tons of laugh and excitement that it packs, all you have to do is hang on till you get to the court scene, from there down to the last scene where Kris cane is seen, I couldn’t help but just laughing all the way through.

Miracle on 34th Street is based on a screenplay by George Seaton, who also came onboard as the director of the film that was actually released in May 1947, instead of during the Christmas season as it is a Christmas movie. The movie is well acted and the screenplay is not bogus or too out of place that will make you think (as I thought, from the title) that one extraordinary miracle was going to happen to convince everyone that he is Santa, the movie rode on a logical note to prove his claim, although the plot leads you to believe a miraculous touch existed as this can be seen in the ending scene.

The movie begins at the Macy's Department Store Thanksgiving Day parade, when the Santa meant to lead the parade was drunk and the lady in charge Doris Walker (Maureen O’Hara), decided to put a funny Santa looking old man Kris Kringle (Edmund Gwenn), as the replacement Santa.

Kris did well and was hired by Doris to work as a Santa for Macy, there Kris started something that helped bring Macy into the limelight by helping parents find toys that Macy didn’t have.

Kris also had a task he wanted to complete, which was to be able to make Doris and her daughter Susan (Natalie Wood) believe that he is really Santa. Well along with his plan things changed that led Kris to be taken and tested to be found psychologically incompetent and was almost institutionalized before a friend Fred Gailey (John Payne), who happened to have an eye for Doris decided to help him out.

20th Century Fox idea to release the movie in May instead of December paid off in the box office as the movie made like 5 times its production cost. Also the movie was well received by critics and it won Academy Awards for Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Edmund Gwenn), Best Writing, Original Story (Valentine Davis) and Best Writing, Screenplay.

The film was revisited in 1994 by John Hughes, it was not as much a critical success likes its predecessor but the 1994 version (which starred Richard Attenborough, Mara Wilson and Elizabeth Perkins) is just as popular as the 1947 version.

Here is a good movie to watch with the family on a nice Christmas day or any other day.


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